Continuing the development of international collection of MICHELIN guides, gastronomes and food connoisseurs can rejoice over yet another milestone in the local food and beverages industry, as the first ever Michelin Guide for Singapore is set to arrive in the second half of 2016.
What is the Michelin Guide?
Introduced in 1889 by Andre and Edouard Michelin, founders of a tyre company, the Michelin Guide was originally a small guide to help motorists develop their trips and in turn, boost car sales and tyre purchases. The guide contained handy information such as maps, information on how to change a tyre, where to fill up on petrol, as well as food places and restaurant listings for travellers to aid in their road trips and adventures.
Fast forward 30 years later, lists of hotels and accommodations were added to the guide, with the restaurants being listed in specific categories as well. The guide also introduced the rating system, where stars were awarded to fine dining establishments. Today, the Michelin Guide rates over 40,000 establishment in over 24 territories, and more than 30 million Michelin Guides have been sold worldwide since.
Introduction of Michelin Guide in Singapore
Widely known as the ‘dining capital of Asia’, Singapore offers a wide array of delicious cuisines – from casual street fare to fine-dining creations by local and international celebrity chefs. Naturally, Singapore is the first Southeast Asian country to be rated by the Michelin Guide.
Slated to be published in the second half of 2016, the print and digital Michelin Guidebook for Singapore is independently and anonymously produced by the Michelin Guide’s team of restaurant dining inspectors, making it easier for food connoisseurs to find the best gastronomic dishes in the city-state. Following the publication of the guidebook, a series of culinary events featuring local dining establishments and foreign chefs rated by the Guide will follow.
Anonymous Rating System
To prep for Singapore’s first-ever Michelin Guide, guide inspectors arrived in Singapore late 2015 to check out the city’s dining scene. The restaurants would be inspected by these guide inspectors, who are also full-time employees of the Michelin Group that dine out regularly for the best consumer recommendations and restaurant experiences. Most of them have studied in the best hospitality schools in the world, and have travelled, lived and work in various countries around the world.
To maintain independence of their opinions and ratings, these inspectors always dine out anonymously, pay for their meals and rate according to the five assessment criteria. Upholding its founding mission of fostering a culture of travel and eating out, Michelin Guide believes in the six core values – anonymity, independence, expertise, reliability, passion and quality.
Assessment Criteria in a Nutshell
Based on the five assessment criteria: quality of ingredients used, mastery of flavour and cooking techniques, the personality of the chef in his cuisine, value for money, as well as consistency between visits – restaurants may receive zero to 3 stars for the quality of their food. Through short two to three-line summaries and an extensive system of symbols, the Michelin Guide conveys its restaurant reviews for the food quality, comfort of the interior, as well as the beverages served.
Coveted and sought after by restaurants and chefs around the world, the Michelin Stars are a crucial factor that can change the fate of a restaurant. Defining the Michelin Stars, here is a short break down of what each rating means:
In picture: One Michelin star restaurant, Uncle Boons Thai Restaurant, in New York City, US.
In picture: Two Michelin stars restaurant, Sun Tung Lok Chinese Cuisine, in Hong Kong.
In picture: Three Michelin stars restaurant, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester, in London, UK.
Other ratings for restaurants or hotels offered by the Michelin Guide include:
- Comfort and Quality – Restaurants or hotels may receive 1 to 5 ‘covers’ (fork and spoon symbols) based on interior decor, table setting, or service quality
- Bib Gourmand – Given to establishments with exceptional good food at moderate prices
- Notable Drink List – Given to restaurants for excellent their drinks and beverages
What can Singaporeans expect
With a globally-recognised guide for the best restaurants one can go to find great food or value for money options at exceptional prices, it brings about a revolution in the local F&B industry. As avid food lovers, we are all thrilled for the Michelin Guide Singapore to be finally arriving in the second half of 2016, awarding the best restaurants in Singapore with the coveted stars.
“The launch of Singapore’s very first edition of the Michelin guide will be a testament of our culinary journey. With the rising trend of food travel, the Michelin guide will help draw more visitors looking to savour the best of what we have to offer,” said Ms Melissa Ow, Deputy Chief Executive of Singapore Tourism Board.
Print and digital editions of the guide book will be available for purchase via the official Michelin Singapore website at SGD 39.95.